Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Redesigning the Setting: Environment, Part 2

In our previous post we looked at the very beginnings of understanding how to create the setting and talked in a little bit of detail about plate tectonics. The next step is determining the plates for your world, your land forms, continents, etc. In hindsight I suggest doing this for your entire planet, whereas I only did this for the area specifically around the major continent I will be working on. This level of detail is not mandatory, but I found it does help guide you in the right direction and it will help with the cultures that live in these areas. For example, a culture that lives in an area that has a lot of earthquakes is probably going to have some belief around why they occur and how they can attempt to control it. It may be that they occur because a God or spirit is angry, if so, how do they appease that entity?
Early Version of Khardan's Plates

Earths Major Plates and Directions

I started with drawing plates and figuring out the boundaries and how they were moving. Remember that some will push and others will collide and some will move past each other. The drawing to the right shows where I put the boundaries in this early draft. In general I also attempted to figure out or detail the direction a plate was moving with an arrow in the plate. The direction should take into account all the different forces acting on a plate. A plate can be pushed from multiple sides and that will determine direction. There are ways to calculate this precisely I suppose but I just eyeballed it.

Once I had the plates worked out then I overlaid my basic desired land forms and marked off where I would have mountains, some faults, etc. This can be seen in the drawing below. Ultimately I chose not to go with this configuration, but it's not bad overall. I'll go into what I did use in the a future post.

Early map of Khardan with plates and some basic features marked off.